Raised Heel Trusses: Environmentally Friendly Money Savers

Pre-fabricated trusses already save builders and framers time and money and offer other advantages such as a more uniform pitch. Their larger spans result in fewer internal load-bearing30.07.2013.Blog_Raised-heelTrusses walls which reduces installation time and costs. Now discerning construction professionals are turning to raised-heel trusses thanks to the increased attic space they produce. This space is then utilized for larger amounts of cheaper insulation which reduces the cost of insulation and provides a more effective building envelope and a greener home. Raised-heel trusses offer many environmental and cost-saving benefits.

Saving Money on Insulation

Traditional truss designs do not provide enough space for full-depth insulation. This means that the insulation has to be compressed which reduces its R-value. The raised-heel truss is fitted with a heel where the bottom chord intersects with the perimeter wall plate which enables the top chord to be raised by a foot or more. The extra height provides additional space for cheaper attic insulation varieties such as fiberglass batts, blown cellulose or blown fiberglass and the full depth of insulation to be extended right to the outside of the top plate. When full depth insulation extends to the outside edge of the top plate newer energy codes allow a lower R-Value across the entire attic area. This is allowed because the extra depth is at the outside wall—right where it’s needed the most.

The increased height of the raised-heel truss and the underlying insulation mean that heat is less likely to leak out at the eaves where insulation is thinnest. This prevents the formation of ice dams which can damage roofs during cold winter months.

Modern Techniques increase Curb Appeal

Raised-heel trusses are engineered and  manufactured to exacting standards making for a more robust roofing structure and an even pitch. The raised-heel truss allows roof lines to match up for an even, aesthetically pleasing result.

Saving money and time

Pre-fabricated trusses enable the installation of the roof framing in under a day. Getting a roof over the house prevents the structural components from unnecessary exposure to inclement weather and is instrumental in preventing buckling and moisture-related issues in roofing, flooring and wall systems.

When attics are adequately ventilated and properly sealed, raised-heel truss installations reduce the temperature and pressure differences between the attic and the building beneath it. This, in turn, reduces the heat transfer from the attic into the living space which means the HVAC system has to work less. This saves money on utility bills and means the HVAC system will last longer. A raised-heel truss roofing system also makes the attic space a more viable option for HVAC ducting as it provides more space for equipment.

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